10 Things: July, August + September
J U L Y
- Pedialyte popsicles are game changers.
- Even if you like Black Box wine, don’t even think about trying the whiskey.
- Bottomless mimosa brunch is always/never a good idea.
- 13 years later, Veronica Mars has still got it. #TrueLoVeForever
- People are legitimately divided on the purpose of a koozie.
- Find someone to take on their first 2am Waffle House experience.
- Have a beer with your parents’ childhood friends.
- You can do yoga poses while holding wine.
- Take your birthday off work.
- Jump in the pool.
A U G U S T
- It doesn’t matter if it’s “dry heat”, 105 degrees is too.freaking.hot.
- Traveling hungover is the absolute worst.
- 3-year-olds will ask you questions you’ve never even considered before.
- Be bold and take yourself out of a situation you don’t want to be in.
- Sometimes an ice luge is purely for show.
- Meet your significant other in another city.
- Be EXTREMELY clear to said significant other about what flight you’re on.
- Go see an Illusionist and allow your belief to be suspended, if only for 1 night.
- Don’t let the tiniest thing ruin your evening.
- Be patient; it is a virtue after all.
- PSL Cold Brew is the best drink Starbucks has ever created.
- Never let me eat Taco Bell in the car.
- Buy a newly engaged couple a bottle of wine – even when you don’t know them.
- Let celebrities enjoy time with their families.
- Trust, but verify.
- Key lime pie is always better in Florida.
- 75% of adults are magnesium deficient.
- Mix prints and just go with it.
- Open the Veuve on a random night.
- The bigger the charcuterie board = the better.
10 Things: Jan + Feb, March + April, May + June
life lately: summer edition
The blog is back from summer hiatus! Here’s a snapshot of our summer – from NYC to LA to everything in between. ❤
N Y C
[spontaneous meet-up in my favorite city]
[I flew in from phoenix, he flew in from bentonville + after lots of delays and a comedy of errors, we finally found each other at la guardia at 1am]
[found the cutest lunch spot with lobster rolls + aperol spritz]
[the best live DJ ride with robin + DJ john michael
350 rides for me + 400 rides for husband!!]
[mind seriously BLOWN by Dan White, the Magician – highly recommend]
[explored williamsburg: smorgasburg (a foodie’s dream come true), brooklyn brewery + the william vale rooftop]
[sunset sails are my absolutely favorite]
[greenwich village: dinner at palma + snuck in to smalls jazz club]
[labor day weekend]
[soaking up the sun in manhattan beach]
[exploring santa barbara + contemplating how to retire here]
[the national at the greek theatre – 9.2.19]
[room views + hotel pools]
[ended the trip at my favorite places with my favorite people]
E V E R Y T H I N G. I N. B E T W E E N.
[LE event of the SUMMER – Stephen and Jaimie get MARRIED!!!]
[celebrated my favorite guy’s birthday with concert, cake + daquiris]
[celebrated Becky’s 30th on the lake #thirtyAF]
[hosted family + showed them some of our fave spots around town]
[attended my very first national sales meeting with this awesome crew in phoenix]
[dinner + a show with the fam]
[it’s a hard knock life/summer without this squad]
[sunset sails, whether on the hudson river or beaver lake, never disappoint]
Summer was delightful, but now on to my favorite season of all – F A L L !
[enjoying this || a perfect summer evening with tap dance, tacos + beer]
[celebrating this || our 8th anniversary with a special drink + handwritten letters]
[soaking in this || the start of summer fridays]
[loving on this || blushing bride-to-be]
[eating this || so much food at bite x2]
[dancing to this || girls night out to see our favorite 90s cover band]
[relaxing like this || the most chill 4th of july weekend with my favorite people]
Alright friends, I’m signing off for the summer!
Enjoy the longer days, the extra time with family + friends and take some time just for YOU (preferably with rosé).
I’ll be back in September with life lately summer edition, alllll the book reviews + more travel adventures! ❤
10 Things: May + June
M A Y
- Celebrate anniversaries, even if it’s just with champagne on the patio.
- Something you loved last year might not be something you love this year.
- Celebrities – they’re just like us.
- Put your mozzarella in a bowl of hot water for a few minutes before eating it (trust me).
- Watching series finales is more fun with friends.
- A themed party is a better party.
- Sunscreen DOES expire.
- Wine hack: never order the 2nd cheapest wine on the menu.
- Add coffee grounds to your hydrangeas to turn them blue.
- There’s no place like home.
J U N E
- Visit/call/send postcards to your grandparents.
- Las Vegas sun is different than Arkansas sun.
- Wash your hair immediately after smoking a cigar.
- Don’t let your husband go to the dealership to just “test drive”.
- Long weekends are not the same as a week-long vacation.
- Sports can actually be fun if you have money riding on the game.
- You can make a delicious drink out of (accidental) frozen wine aka breakfast sangria slushie.
- If it feels like fate, take the leap and go for it.
- Don’t break in new shoes in Las Vegas.
- Take the bet; you have to risk to get the reward.
10 Things: Jan + Feb, March + April
Vacation Picturebook: Reno + Las Vegas
We had the best start to our vacation visiting Kyle’s grandparents in Reno! They took us to Virginia City (old western town), we explored downtown Reno, and we had lots of late night wine in grandma’s gorgeous garden.
Then we took an amazing day trip to Lake Tahoe – one of my favorite places of ever!
L A S V E G A S
Night 1: We love the Cosmopolitan + Absinthe!! If you haven’t seen the show, we highly recommend, but warning it is VERY raunchy.
Pool days are the best days!
Night 2: We still love the Cosmopolitan and didn’t leave – found amazing live music + food at Rose. Rabbit.Lie, the coolest speakeasy behind a barbershop + late night milk bar cake (and secret pizza, obviously).
Another pool day and the best breakfast sandwich I’ve ever had in my life … also won $$ on my first ever sports bet. Yay Toronto!
Aaand then it was time for brother-sister Leo tattoos!
Fun last night at Container Park + Fremont Street
We had the best vacation spending time with family, and can’t wait to go back! ❤
[drinking this || all the beer at our favorite event, fayetteville foamfest]
[loving this || the best monday night with literally everyone at the killers!]
[enjoying this || a quick trip to LA for work, eating at my favorite restaurant, spending time with one of my favorite people + running into DIANE KEATON!!]
[throwing this || game of thrones finale watch party, complete with themed food + drink and trivia with prizes]
[cheers-ing to this || an amazing long weekend]
so long, sweet summer.
Oh sweet labor day,
your weekend signals the close of summer and the nudge to pack away the white pants.
But, for many, myself included, you also cue the thrill of something new. The best season of all is peeking around the corner (if we’re lucky). True, I’ve already planned my 3rd Annual Fall Party and I’m currently burning a pumpkin spice candle as I write this, BUT I’m actually trying to hold on to the sunshine just a little bit longer this year.
It’s been an extraordinary summer. Did we go on any huge trips? No. Did we have any life-altering events happen? Not really. But sometimes isn’t that the best summer of all? Little bits of joy coupled together to create a beautiful summer of memories.
S U M M E R O F 2 0 1 8
“Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall.”
Weekend Picturebook: Palm Springs
[delicious steak dinner for Kira’s 30th birthday!]
S A T U R D A Y
[early morning walk + coffee with these balcony views]
[hands down, the best huevos rancheros I’ve ever had
breakfast at Kings Highway + the Amigo Room before pool party at the ACE hotel … ]
[so much fun at ACE pool party! how could we not, with a bubbly bus?!]
[post-pool party burger – the.best.]
[great night at the cougar-town piano bar, where I got asked to be in a “hand dancing” music video ha!!]
[more chill pool day, round 2]
[dinner and exploring at The Saguaro – yummy fish tacos + queso]
[love this beautiful friend of mine and so happy I got to spend her 30th birthday with her in California! <3]
You might also enjoy my other Summer Weekend Picturebooks: NYC, Chicago
[celebrating this || husband’s birthday with the BEST 90’s cover band and of course, beer]
[eating this || amazing sushi + REAL wasabi (who knew?!)]
[re-living this || our high school glory days with band Taking Back Sunday!]
[drinking this || while trying to cool off in 115 degree heat in Phoenix!]
[enjoying this || beautiful blooms <3]
[loving on this || beautiful baby momma-to-be!]
30 Before 30: Q2 Progress Update
As I’ve shared previously, I’m working towards completing a list of 30 things before I turn 30.
I can’t believe I’m already halfway through the challenge – which means I’m halfway through my 29th year! Eek! I’m definitely making progress, but need to start seriously checking things off the list in Q3 … if anyone wants to help with any let me know!
Start a new adventure.I’ve worked for Walmart for 6.5 years, as my first job out of college. I’ve officially accepted a position at Clorox, and couldn’t be more excited/anxious/thrilled to start this new adventure.
- Make a complex meal 100% from scratch.
Hike Pinnacle Mountain + eat a Hubcap burger at Cotham’s.Unfortunately, I didn’t get to eat at Cotham’s since the original location burned down last year. However, I did hike Pinnacle – and it was a doozy! The challenge was worth it, as the views were stunning, and we’re already planning another hike up in the Fall.
- Successfully do a one-armed push-up.
See a critically acclaimed show.This one makes me so happy because I’ve been dying to see this show and Mom got me tickets for my 29th birthday for our trip to Chicago. It was AMAZING. Absolutely go see it if you get the chance.
- Volunteer 30 hours. (13 hours complete!) This quarter included great, hot, sweaty, challenging Habitat work.
- Buy all my friends a round, randomly.
Play video games with Husband for a night, complete with pizza + beer.This was so fun! We played Mario Kart (he schooled me), tennis (both won) and a fighting game (which we also both won, to Husband’s chagrin). I definitely need to get in Husband’s world and do this more often!
- Intentionally choose to stay by myself one night in a hotel. Obviously I’ve stayed by myself before, but for work or when husband was away – not intentionally.
- Learn a song on the guitar.
- Be in a play.
- Learn to play blackjack.
- Make a signature cocktail.
- Make a YouTube video that gets over 1k views.
- Start my book. This is one husband has been pushing me to do for years.
Win at least 1 trivia night.This one was totally out of the blue, but glad it happened the way it did. We won the poolside Hollywood Trivia on our family vacation in Mexico. Go Team Guacamole!
- Write 30 handwritten letters. (22 complete!)
- Take a dance class.
- Go to a movie solo. Does it count that I tried to do this? I went to Mamma Mia 2, bought my ticket, got my popcorn and then partially into the movie it stopped working and they gave us our money back …
Ride 300 miles.Maybe this one didn’t take as along as anticipated, but it’s still checked off the list and I’m proud!
- Dye my hair pink. Again, something I’ve always wanted to do. It could just be a few strands, and it could wash out after a day. Either way, I think 29 is the best time to do it.
- Do 5 things that scare me. (1. Leave my comfort zone job of 6.5 years. Trust me – it’s scary. 2. Ride a snowmobile)
- Give an amount of money that is significant to me and is significant to someone in need, but do it in such a way no one would ever know it was me who gave it and expect nothing in return.
- Travel to a state I’ve never been to.
- Take a personal day, for no reason at all.
Challenge myself with a new hobby.I didn’t realize it at first, but this is totally the Peloton! Since I didn’t grow up in sports or really sticking with an exercise routine, riding consistently has been a huge challenge for me and totally feels like a new hobby! We even chose to ride while on vacation – something I never thought I’d do, ha! See someone in concert I’ve been dying to see.Taylor Swift – check. Taking Back Sunday (our favorite band from high school) – check AND Beyonce/Jay-Z coming up next month. I think I can officially check this one off the list.
- Find an artist whose perspective of the world I appreciate and buy a piece of his or her work.
Take a spontaneous trip.Someone could probably fight me on this, but it’s my blog so I’ll do what I want – our NYC trip was totally spontaneous for me. No, it wasn’t a pick-up-and-go trip, but our friend Mark called, said he was having his 30th birthday party in NYC and did we want to go? I never turn down a trip to New York, so we said yes, but not planning something like that several months out is my kind of spontaneity!!
- Plan a huge 30th birthday bash.
- BONUS: Read 30 books. (16 complete!)
Next quarterly update: Nov. 1 !
It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these posts, but here are a few things I love and want to share with you, so you can love them too. ❤
BOOK OF THE MONTH: Y’all know I’m an avid reader, and I’m seriously obsessed with this service! Here’s why –
1. The books are new titles with different genres to choose from
2. If you want to skip a month you can
3. It’s $14.99/month (cheaper than buying the book new from B&N or Amazon) and you can add another book into your box for just $9.99!
4. It’s been pushing me to read more because I want to finish my book(s) before the next month’s selection arrives
If you’re interested, use this link to sign up for Book of the Month – you’ll get a free book and I’ll get a free book! https://www.mybotm.com/sbucdim3rc
(I promise you won’t regret it!!)
You can also check out my book reviews here – quite a few from BOTM!
LIVING PROOF DRY SHAMPOO: I’ve tried so many dry shampoos – affordable and expensive, and this is hands down the best one I’ve tried. It’s a little more on the expensive side, but it feels like it actually cleans my hair and doesn’t leave white residue. I buy it in the big bottle for home and the small bottles to take with me when I travel!
Sephora full size: $23, mini: $13
ALLBIRDS: Husband was the first to join this bandwagon and to be honest, I was skeptical. But now, we both have two pairs each and are totally in love. They’re the perfect shoe for running errands or traveling, they’re so cute, so comfortable and you can just throw them in the wash if they get dirty. I have them in black and pink.
BURT’S BEES PEACH BLUSH: Since working on Burt’s Bees, I’ve been trying a lot of their products and loving a lot of them, but one of my current favorites is the blush. I love it in Bare Peach, but it comes in three shades. It’s 100% natural, lightweight and the coloring is perfect.
BLOW-UP POOL: If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve undoubtedly seen this pool and how much I’ve been using it this summer. In this high 90s, high humidity Arkansas weather it’s been a lifesaver! It fits 2-3 adults, has a seat and cup holders. I’d say it’s the perfect “adult kiddie pool”!
So when we bought it it was $30, but now I can’t seem to find it for less than $52 on Amazon, but definitely keep looking if you’re interested – it’s worth it!
[volunteering for this || great day at habitat for humanity – hard work in this heat!]
[celebrating this || rosé in the usa aka 4th of july]
[mourning over this || the closing of our FAVORITE restaurant in NWA + eating a final meal]
[loving this || concert season at the AMP!
kesha + macklemore
30 seconds to mars]
[walking to this || neighborhood progressive dinner! the most fun ever!]
[enjoying this || my gorgeous hibiscus blooms]
Weekend Picturebook: NYC
T H U R S D A Y
[Gorgeous views flying into the city]
[Late night bite at Jacob’s Pickles, a few blocks from our hotel – the buffalo chicken blue cheese mac and cheese was TDF, and see husband’s chicken and pancakes with bacon in the background – good-ness!!]
F R I D A Y
[First things first – had to get that Peloton ride in! It was seriously such an awesome experience! 90s Pop Ride with Emma Lovewell (Husband’s fave instructor)
(If you don’t know about Peloton, ask me!)]
[Lunch at Momofuku Noodle Bar with birthday boy Mark – pork ramen was delish, and so cool to finally eat at this place!]
[Undoubtedly one of the best parts of the trip – we stumbled upon this freaking amazing rooftop bar with the most delicious frosé I’ve ever had!]
[Next stop – checked something off my NYC bucket list: Top of the Rock! Views were incredible.
And we definitely didn’t *almost* fall off from all that frosé…]
[Cheers to pour decisions! Such a fun night out celebrating one of our dear friends’ 30th birthday!]
S A T U R D A Y
[Explored Upper West Side and found one of my new favorite places – Zabars!
If only I lived here and could shop there every day – speciality cheeses, homemade bread …
at least I got to try a bagel and coffee.]
[Walk along Riverside Park – another gorgeous day in the city.
The locals thought it was too hot, but low 80s felt great to us Southerners!!]
[American Museum of Natural History was amazing! (Night at the Museum, anyone??)
My geologist/developer husband especially loved the rocks]
[Saturday night in Greenwich Village – mine (and T.Swift’s) fave <3]
[Dinner at Emily West Village (aka Pizza Loves Emily) – tried to do a cute blogger pizza photoshoot … total fail haha! But I do have a cute Instagram Husband]
[Found the most adorable Air’s Champagne Parlor – this was the BEST rosé! The quote on the mirror says: “I only drink champagne on two occasions – when I’m in love, and when I’m not.” – Coco Chanel
[Comedy Cellar! SUCH a cool experience – I would highly recommend!]
S U N D A Y
[Brunch at Jacob’s Pickles before our flight home – we learned our lesson for next time, definitely share!!]
[Cheers to an awesome trip and watching the World Cup final in the airport!]
You might also enjoy some of my other NYC picturebooks: Sept. 2017, Aug. 2016, Dec. 2012
Those Lazy-Hazy-Crazy Days of Summer
Lately, I’ve been learning how to be content. Content with stillness. Content with a slower pace. Content with the season of life I’m in.
I made a radical change a few months ago. Sometimes job changes may not seem radical or may not be radical at times, but my entire way of life changed with this one. My days are now more consistent, my nights and weekends are more about me, and everything just feels different.
At first, I might have missed it. I might have missed the crazy, rollercoaster days and weeks I was so accustomed to. But then, I got off the rollercoaster and realized life was so much more than the thrilling, yet unpredictable highs and lows.
Contentment is hard though, isn’t it? Don’t we always seem to want something else, think the grass is always greener? Enjoying where you are and not pining for the next season of life is very hard. I’m not saying I have the secret to success, but it’s something God has been teaching me the last few months.
And I love it. I love the stillness. I love the laziness of just being home with husband, cooking meals together, arguing over why the washer isn’t working, contemplating why one plant isn’t growing, doing life together. ((Have we officially become a boring, old, married couple?!))
Yet, just the other day I asked husband if I was squandering away my summer Fridays by doing nothing. Doing nothing for me being, laying by the pool reading 100 pages at a time, then going inside to cool down and watch an episode or two of my current binge. Should I be using my time off wisely? Getting things done? Crossing things off my to-do list?
No. Just be. Enjoy the time. Enjoy those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer.
I’m thankful for this season of life we’re currently in. I know it won’t last, but hope to enjoy it while we can, and then learn to love the next season – whatever may come.
“Live each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influences of each.”
– Henry David Thoreau
[celebrating this || 7 years of marriage with my favorite guy <3]
[enjoying this || a cool dip in my new pool]
[watching this || ocean’s 8 with my girl tribe!]
[loving this || wonderful deck-warming party with drinks, lawn games + the cutest cookies]
[eating this || a gorgeous and delicious meal at Preacher’s Son]
[stuffing ourselves at this || BITE NWA, two nights in a row, and it was oh so worth it]
Weekend Picturebook: Chicago
T H U R S D A Y
[First stop: Eataly then shopping!]
[The most AMAZING dinner at Girl and The Goat – oysters, goat empanadas + fall off the bone pork shank. Seriously a meal I’ll never forget.]
[We would highly recommend the architectural boat tour – even though we were freezing our booties off! Good thing there was plenty of coffee + baileys.]
[Cliché touristy things: pictures in front of the Bean, chicago dog + Art Institute]
[Cindy’s Rooftop was perfection – and boy do we have a story to share. Ha!]
[HAMILTON! finally! 100% lived up to (or possibly beyond) the hype]
[SNL exhibit at the Broadcast Museum was too cool – we could have easily spent all day in there!]
[Walk along the beach + a drink at The Drake – not exactly beach volleyball weather to us Southerners!]
[almost time for TAYLOR ….. !!!]
but first, a little history …
[T.Swift in LA, 2010]
[T.Swift in Nashville, 2013 – 2ND ROW. Don’t even ask how we got those seats.]
[T.Swift in Chicago, 2018!]
and yes, we’re wearing matching touristy sweatshirts because, again, it was freezing
[I swear I’m still on a high from this show. 2 hours of pure adrenaline, singing at the top of my lungs, dancing to my heart’s content. Best part was when she came to the second stage right next to us!!!]
[and then it started pouring, but we were okay with it because, Taylor, duh]
[and then we had to walk 3 miles home, in the pouring rain, couldn’t get an uber, and I was so over it… BUT THE CONCERT WAS AMAZING]
S U N D A Y
[Ended the weekend on a perfect note – brunch at The Hampton Social. Pictured: Frosé, lobster bisque + crab and avocado – all delish!]
What a perfect mother-daughter weekend. I couldn’t have asked for anything more!
[celebrating this || our beautiful mommas for mother’s day <3]
[decorating this || our “spring themed” cake at our team cake decorating competition!]
[laughing at this || a weird + funny “sub-par” night, that actually wasn’t sub-par at all]
[enjoying this || a fun evening with co-workers at the DICED cooking competition]
[waking up early for this || the most beautiful, perfect #RoyalWedding!!]
[LOVING THIS || our new deck + updated landscaping is finally complete!]
Fayetteville Foamfest: A History
If there’s one thing I seem to enjoy more the older I get, it’s traditions. Annual events. Something to look forward to same time, every year.
The best example of this is Fayetteville Foamfest – a beer festival. (When I first heard about it, I thought it was a literal FOAM fest, because I did go to one of those in PCB ….) We first attended in 2013 and have gone every year since. We hype it up. We talk about it all year. “The most wonderful time of the year,” they say. We regale previous year stories. We get more people excited to attend. And it is always so.much.freakin.fun.
As our 6th year in a row attending, I wanted to compile pictures from all of the years. If you love beer, and you feel left out after this post, we’d love for you to join us next year!!
Also, shoutout to Josh for being the only one who has been to all 6 years outside of myself and Husband. It wouldn’t be the same without ya, Josh!
[2013: the year we almost froze to death (yes, in MAY) + didn’t yet know how to get our money’s worth of beer]
[2014: the year Josh broke up with the Egyptian’s girlfriend]
[2015: the year we left Stephen in Fayetteville –
if you’ve been around our group at all, you’ve undoubtedly heard this story … multiple times … and from multiple perspectives ((I’ll tell you the true version!!))]
[2016: the year of the hats + the invention of “power hour”]
[2017: the year we danced our hearts out + ate all the pizza ((except Alex))]
[2018: the year we made it to Dickson + dipped, a lot]
Whatever happens, we’ll always have Foamfest.
Weekend Picturebook: NYC
F R I D A Y
[late flight in – so, amazing pizza at our hotel restaurant (you can read more about here), and drinks at our rooftop bar with these views || also, how cute is this little hotel room?]
S A T U R D A Y [up and at ’em, ready for shopping! husband’s only request in new york was to go to the nintendo store … just like a kid in a candy store]
[more shopping and central park views]
((not pictured: a glass of pinot by the lake and delicious shake shack lunch after a loooong day of walking))
[ready to brave the weather for our sunset sailboat ride]
[despite the drizzle (then eventual downpour), we had an incredible time on the Hudson in our sailboat. I would highly recommend this tour to anyone!]
[post-dinner jazz session in an underground cafe in greenwich village – perfect end to the evening]
S U N D A Y
[sadly, we woke to more rain so it put a damper on some of our plans, but instead led us to eat an incredible brunch in west village][bucket list: walk the brooklyn bridge – check! so much fun!]
[explored dumbo, brooklyn heights + another awesome rooftop bar || next time we’re staying in brooklyn!]
M O N D A Y
[late morning risers – I could not get over this comfy bed and these views || did I mention they also had automated blackout shades?!]
[took a 4-mile stroll for none other than our favorite cookies, then enjoyed them with coffee in central park]
[final hours in the city spent at The Met – who knew this rooftop garden was up here?!]
Until we meet again, NYC.
You might also enjoy: Weekend Picturebook: Portland
Food Picturebook: Minneapolis + NYC
[ M I N N E A P O L I S ]
This place was PHENOMENAL. I cannot recommend it enough. Top picture is their famous lobster + soft egg bruschetta – I was definitely skeptical, but I will definitely be getting it every time I go back. Next was a mushroom pasta that transported me back to Italy.
I read amazing reviews about this place and it was named one of the top 10 restaurants in the country, so you’d say I had pretty high expectations … that were not met. The pizza was very good, but nothing special. However, the place was very cool with a hidden bar and trendy vibe.
P S Y C H O S U Z I E S
Even though this isn’t food, I had to include this one because the cup is cute and the place was so fun. A full-blown tiki bar on the river – how could you go wrong?!
[ N Y C ]
Okay, so this isn’t a food pic either, but the food was SO delicious and we were SO hungry from traveling that I couldn’t get one in time. However, it needs to be accounted for because it was one of our favorite things we ate on the trip – buffalo chicken pizza with blue cheese crumbles. Oh my gosh. This will haunt my dreams.
S O T T O 1 3
Hands down, the best breakfast pizza I’ve ever had. Ever. Ever. This was also a great brunch deal with a lot of food and delicious rose sangria in an adorable location.
I’ve always known about this place, but only recently did I learn about their banana pudding. You guys. You think you know banana pudding – or you think you don’t like banana pudding – but you don’t know banana pudding. We literally got one of the last ones and devoured it in minutes.
Another meal that reminded me of Italy – this pizza was fantastic. The mushrooms and prosciutto were divine and paired with an Italian bottle of wine was exactly what we needed after getting unexpectedly drenched in the rain.
Another one where I did not get a photo of the actual food, but the place must not be forgotten. This was a Mexican speakeasy where you walk through this “Corner Deli”, down the stairs, through the kitchen to get to a dark, loud, trendy bar/restaurant. While it wasn’t conducive to holding a conversation, it had fabulous queso, tacos and the best ever street corn.
I’ll be posting more NYC trip pics soon!
[celebrating this || husband’s 30th, sister’s 50th + puppy’s 5th!]
[eating this || amazing pizza in portland at our family reunion weekend]
[enjoying this || a fun summer work event at crystal bridges #TeamAwesomePowers]
[drinking this || delish blueberry beer at trivia night]
[loving this || a super fun mother-daughter trip to Pawhuska, Oklahoma to see Pioneer Woman Mercantile + the lodge where they film the show!]
[relaxing with this || coffee, a book + a sweater (!!!) on our front porch]
Weekend Picturebook: Portland
[A weekend in Portland for a family reunion]
The rest of the family is spending the week in Bend, OR, (which sounded amazing) but we could only come for a long weekend so we rendezvoused in the city for a few days!
[Gorgeous views of snow-capped mountains on our flight in]
[First stop: a brewery, of course! Breakside Brewery was amazing – awesome building, great indoor/outdoor seating and this blood orange IPA was so delicious]
[Incredible meal at The Waiting Room – hush puppies, fried chicken + creamed corn with jalapeños!]
[Early morning walk for coffee + Trader Joe’s in 59 degree weather – I forgot what that felt like! And it was incredible!!][The downtown food truck scene was so cool. There were so many unique options to choose from! We chose gyros and again, it was amazing][This place has my heart. I could have spent all day in here! I only spent 20 minutes and left with 4 books and a coffee mug, so I can only imagine …]
[Gorgeous morning hike up to the International Rose Test Garden – perfect weather and beautiful flowers]
[10:30am – time for … ice cream? We had been scoping out this popular place and the lines were ridiculously long, so we decided to try it first thing Sunday morning for a little treat. I’m so glad we did because it was definitely some of the best ice cream I’ve ever had and there was no line! Pictured: sea salt with caramel ribbons + coffee][Sunday morning farmer’s market was a hit – splash pad for the kids + delicious food for the adults. Unfortunately this was the only picture I got, but it’s okay because these pupusas were out of this world!! I literally watched the lady hand make them out of this tent. I truly feel like I know what real pupusas are now]
[30th Annual Oregon Brewers Festival on the waterfront – lots of beer and lots of fun!] [Unfortunately this is the only family photo we got while in town and doesn’t even include the whole gang. (Adorable nephew is cut out purposefully, but he was the cutest part!!)]
I’m so thankful we got to spend even just a few days together exploring this city! It was a wonderful weekend getaway with a wonderful family.
You might also enjoy: our last family reunion 5 years ago in Hot Springs
[watching this || PLL SERIES FINALE #HalebForever]
[rocking out to this || silversun pickups + third eye blind on a super fun wednesday night]
[dying over this || a ROOFTOP bar in little ol’ bentonville!]
[loving this || a beautiful saturday with beautiful people]
[eating this || the best tacos ever]
[celebrating/crying over this || our best friends moving to Kansas City this weekend. we are so sad, yet so happy for their new adventures … and of course, we will visit all the time!! #Hotarmans4Ever]
Aldermans Go Global: Italy, Part 2 (Cinque Terre + Venice)
C I N Q U E T E R R E
[First night on the water – delicious dinner of fresh pasta with prawns + refreshing wine]
[Two amazing, relaxing days on the beach – exactly what we needed at this point in the trip!]
[Monterosso – adorable winding streets with beautiful street art]
[The pictures that follow are from our favorite night of the trip, on Angelo’s Sunset Boat Tour. Boat + guide Sammy pictured above. Seriously, if you are ever here, this is absolutely worth every penny!]
[Boat views of the towns = all the praise hands] [Stopped for tapas in Vernazza – these mussels + anchovies were TDF … and I don’t eat mussels or anchovies!] [And this is right before we saw the dolphins and I cried. But for real, this night was so surreal and felt like a dream.]
[Final night in Cinque Terre – Vernazza Wine Experience with sweeping views that I failed to capture, except for the views of the wine + food]
CINQUE TERRE: We love love loved these adorable coastal towns. This was a very close second behind Siena for our favorite place. We actually stayed in a little town called Levanto (not one of the main touristy towns) and it was wonderful. Less touristy, yet still beachy and charming. We also had some super fun, not pictured, patio nights with Limoncello, Despacito + strange Asian men.
V E N I C E [Our cute Hotel Flora that took us forever to find, until we finally found it hidden on one of the streets behind Burberry, Ferragamo, Gucci …. ]
[Piazza at night + another delicious dinner – look at those shrimp!!]
[Peggy Guggenheim Museum was phenomenal. We were so excited to see some Modern art at this point after all the Renaissance art. Love this picture of Husband taking a picture of the water with a Jackson Pollock right behind him!]
[SO much fun on our Venetian Pub Tour – we drank so much wine, went to hole-in-the-wall pubs and learned a lot (that we didn’t totally agree with) from our tour guide] [Day trip to the islands of Burano and Murano were totally worth it. Look how beautiful these colored buildings are! I took the second for my Mom – because I know if she were there, she’d totally be taking an art class like this!]
[Accidentally found this amazing, highly-rated B&B in Murano. My swordfish + tiramisu coffee ice cream were outstanding. I would totally come back and stay here!]
[Perfect final night in Venice with these beautiful people, and very fitting my last meal would be with more TRUFFLE!]
[We loved the bar across from our hotel! We made it a habit to end there every night. They played American Pop hits and served the “best” pina coladas + the best prosecco.]
VENICE: I had a love/hate relationship with Venice. I’m so glad we went, because it is so unique and incredible that there are no cars and the only transportation is by water taxi. (We even got to the airport by water taxi – how cool is that!) However, I’m not sure I’d go back – it was expensive, pigeons were everywhere, and I got eaten alive by mosquitos.
Hope you enjoyed re-living our trip through photos! I certainly did! Now, who’s ready to go back!?
Alderman’s Go Global: Italy, Part 1 (Rome + Tuscany)